Cardigans go from granny to gorgeous

Once more likely to be worn by grandmas and librarians, it seems the knitted cardigan has become a must-have fashion item.

Thanks to celebrity fans such as popstar wife Hailey Bieber, model Bella Hadid and actor Katie Holmes, demand for the button-up knitwear is surging.

Online high-end label site Net-A-P orter’s senior market editor , Libby Page, said the cardigan trend grew out of COVID-19 lockdown .

“The cardigan trend is a direct result of the new normal we find ourselves in,” Ms Page said

“The cardigan is cosier than a sweater but also gives an overall sense of being more put together ; it’s a perfect item for Zoom.

“Knitwear in general has increased in popularity over the past year and we see a huge interest from our customers for cardigans.”

On Net-APorter , top sellers include cardigans from Khaite as worn by Holmes along with high-end labels Toteme, Loulou Studio and Proenza Schouler.

Australian designer With Jean’s “Carie” cardigan has gone viral on Instagram, worn by trendsetting models and social media stars this season.

With Jean co-founder and director Evangeline Titilas said there had been strong sales of the Brisbane-based brand’s cardigan in green and orange (priced at $189).

“We are definitely having a strong sell through with these items and have had a really good response,” she said.

Fellow co-founder and director Sami Lorking-Tanner said: “We’re seeing a lot of girls layer it, wearing it open or closed with nothing underneath.

“We love how versatile a cardi is and it will be an item (and) category we continue to grow.”

Searches for cardigans were up 34 per cent month on month globally, according to trend forecaster and shopping platform Lyst.

Searches for long cardigans increased by more than 20 per cent month on month, a Lyst spokeswoman said.

In Australia, demand for cardigans went up 50 per cent in the past month.

Former MAFS star Martha Kalifatidis last year caused a near frenzy when she sported a $40 Glassons cardigan on Instagram . It sold out in 24 hours.

Wearing a $1500-plus Khaite fisherman-style cardigan and matching cashmere bra, Holmes’ outfit in 2019 prompted a surge in internet searches for “Katie Holmes’ cardigan” .

Bieber turned heads in a Jacquemus cardi and bra set, while similar styles have been seen on Hadid, who wore hers with nothing underneath.

This article by NADIA SALEMME is from the March 21, 2021 issue of The Herald Sun Digital Edition. To subscribe, visit